Synaptic Thought

Have keyboard, will ramble!

You

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Most days it is easy to forget about you. In fact, most of the time I’ve forgotten the fact that I am forgetting you. That’s how easy it is, most days.

Some days, though, you seem to pop up in the middle of everything. It isn’t intended in the least, and more often than not, I find myself wondering why I am wondering. Where is it you come from on those days?

On those days I find it hard to concentrate on, well, anything. I spend my time focusing so much attention on not paying attention that I often pay more attention than is healthy. It shouldn’t be so hard to forget someone who wants to be forgotten.

It’s just that you seem to find ways to come up, though I know you aren’t intending to. Maybe it’s the fact that we know the same people, and end up in the same places. Not exactly the same places, just shy of being in the same place. I see you out of the corner of my eye as I walk.

Working on forgetting you is a very difficult task. It’s something that I will be very proud of when I accomplish it. Sadly, I won’t be able to praise myself for the feat, because it will remind me of you.

This, and more at Synaptic Thought.

Out Dream

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I am not a huge fan of my brain when it comes to bad dreams. I usually tend to get stuck in a loop of waking up to stop the dream and going back to sleep, where the dream starts over. I usually have to do something so I will break the cycle. So I am writing this at 5:30 in the morning, in an attempt to clear my mind.

I’m going to try to go back to sleep and finish this in the morning.

Now, much later in the day, I can actually focus enough to write clearly. It isn’t common for me to have bad dreams, but when I do they tend to haunt me the entire night. The latest was particularly devious, tricking me into thinking I had actually woken up, when I hadn’t. I think the worst part is that dreams like this often inspire me to think about my past and things that have happened. I’m very sure I did not handle every situation in my past in the best manner, and that bugs me.

Too often I wish I could go back and change things that happened. Sadly that is not possible. Keep looking forward.

This, and more, at Synaptic Thought.

Spending Daze

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In the spirit of having a new mattress (for those of you who don’t know, my waterbed decided to explode) I decided I really should get new sheets and a comforter to go with the mattress. I decided this a couple of days ago as I was laying in bed and realized the stuff I had on there now was a product of me realizing I had a bed I needed to put sheets on, and quickly bought the cheapest thing I could find. Formerly  my linens consisted of king size satin sheets (on a queen bed) and a full size comforter. The sheets, while very velvety were wearing thin and that type of material has no real lasting power, and for obvious reasons the comforter didn’t fit.

So as a replacement I bought some 400 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets, a very nice red damask comforter, and two over sized pillows to replace the ones going into the shams. That’s right, I said shams. The only thing I didn’t get was a bed skirt, and it’s because I couldn’t find one. Consequently, I promise I am straight.

I’m really not sure what happens to a person as they get older. I’m not saying I’ve transitioned into “old age” but I think a few years ago I wouldn’t have cared what my sheets look like, or the fact that I needed pillows to go behind my other pillows to make the set look right. I am not sure if it is capitalism setting in and me realizing I want nice stuff, or if I just want stuff to look nice. I think it was the latter, because once the bed was made I was pretty proud of myself. Maybe I’m trying to make a home for myself now, perhaps it’s time for that to happen.

On the other hand, personal growth can be very taxing, maybe I should sit and stew on this for a while. 😛

Synaptic Thought

A Return, of Sorts

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Image from xkcd.com. Check him out in the links at the bottom.

After some time away from the Internet it’s time to come home. I know, the first reaction is that I work on the Internet, so I can’t get away from it, but if you try hard enough you can. I had a bunch of things in my life going on and really couldn’t deal with it all. Throw in constant connectivity, the addition of a master’s level class load and work and I’m pretty sure I could have gone crazy if things kept up.

Some things in my life are over now, and I will not be able to go back to them again. I think the image above really describes the last half year of my life. But here is to getting things in order.

Synaptic Thought

Through the Steam

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He stood there among hundreds of people milling about the platform, his eyes downcast, and his tongue frozen for what to say. He had always been a person of action, someone who could take control of a situation and fix the wrongs that turn the world upside down. That was with other people’s lives, though. In his own it didn’t seem to work out for him in the same way. It always seems hard to apply your own advice to your life.

What does one say? The thought kept spinning in his mind, and no matter how hard he tried he couldn’t pin down the answer. Instead he lifted his head and examined the ongoings around him. Standing close to him was a young woman, wearing a very tasteful brocade dress, she was holding the hands of her parents and looking at them with a large smile on her lips. Judging by her age, and the bags she had packed, she was leaving for university. She would spend the next few years of her life chasing her dreams. She would face disappointments, he knew, but she would also find herself in those years and become an adult. He hoped she understood how meaningful those years would be, and how important it was that she followed through. He wanted to tell her, but how strange would that be?

Instead, he changed his focus to the young man standing off to his left. He wore a military uniform, a duffel bag sat at his feet, which were tapping in a nervous and antsy fashion. His feet were the only thing about him that showed any emotion, his face was stern, his eyes locked at the train door ahead of him, as if expecting that when the doors opened his enemy would come rushing out of them. He was alone, there was no one there to wish him luck, pat him on the back or grip his shoulder. The young man in uniform was headed into a world where he may not return, where death could be the only thing he has to look upon.

He stopped looking at the man in uniform, and instead turned his head straight, looking in front of him. She stood there, her eyes downcast in the same manner his had been before he looked around. No one ever really knows what to say in times like this, and he was sure she was in the same predicament as he. Not knowing what else to do, he brushed his hand across her face, back across her hair. She flinched, not because she was surprised by his action, but by the familiar sting that shot to her heart. It was the same for him, he felt it travelling through his hand, down his arm, and straight to his chest. A pang of regret lingered, caused his heart to lurch at an unsteady beat up and down, faster then slower.

As he looked at her, steam began to creep onto the platform, a fog made visible by the cool winter air about them. It became harder to see her as the gray tendrils curled about her body, climbing up to her face. The fog was taking her away from him, both literally and figuratively. It signified that the train was prepared to get underway and soon the passengers would start boarding. He saw the fog as a thief, it was wrapping her up and taking her away, to a place he would not be, and she would not return to him from. He knew it was for the best, they had had the conversations. Nights filled with impassioned shouting and heart breaking door slams, nights spent alone.

He watched her as she silently knelt and wrapped her hands around the handles of her bags. She stood, and he noticed there were no tears in her eyes, just a firm look of resolve. She was determined, and there was nothing that could be done to stop her. He held back his own tears, clenching them within his soul, locking them inside himself instead of letting them flow. She wasn’t crying, so he wouldn’t either. She opened her mouth as if to say something, but instead, closed it, and simply turned on her heel and walked aboard the train, as the doors had just opened.

His heart screamed for him to stop her, but his hands clenched in his pockets, and his mind argued that it would be futile. He watched her climb the steps, she didn’t look back. She rounded the corner on the train and she was gone. Minutes later the engine began to churn, the wheels groaned and began to move and before long the train was gone. He hadn’t realized the platform was empty, everyone had left, and it was just him standing on that empty platform, lingering bits of steam and fog twining around his legs and about his shoes.

Before too much longer, the sun had gone down, and the glow of electric lamps began to light the small, isolated spot on the station platform where he stood. He wasn’t aware that night had fallen, just as he wasn’t aware of the train having left. He stood, fighting with his inner emotions, until the chill of the night crept into his chest and he had to wrap his coat around him tightly. Finally, he looked up, noticed his surroundings, and let out a slight sigh. He knew he must leave, and that the next step he took would be the first in a life without her. He looked at the spot where the train door had taken her, and he whispered.

“Goodbye.”

A Smile for Someone

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She stood on a beach, where wasn’t exactly important to her, just that the white sand was powdery and soft between her toes. Her bare back was exposed to the sun, but it wasn’t a harsh summer sun, it was the warm welcoming sun that pulled her into its embrace and made her feel alive. She didn’t really know why she was at the beach, or how she had gotten to that particular spot, but that also didn’t really matter. It was the fact that she was here that mattered, why it mattered was a mystery, but she felt as if when the time was appropriate she would know.

Her blue eyes were lightly lidded against the breeze that was coming in from the water. She wore a white skirt made of some light fabric that normally played about her ankles as she walked, but now billowed out behind her in the breeze. It was a striking picture she painted, standing there looking out over the water, the salt-tinged breeze kicking back that skirt, her blond hair slightly damp, as if she had recently been in the water she was surveying. She hadn’t been, of course, but it really didn’t matter if she had or not, just that she was here, her toes wriggling in the sand, and her eyes staring out across the vastness that was the ocean.

She realized that she was smiling, but didn’t know why. It occurred to her that she really wasn’t sure about a lot of things, who she was, where she was, or even why she was. She knew, though, that something had inspired her to smile, and was still doing so. She also knew that she was OK with not knowing what she was smiling about, that eventually she would become aware of it. Her thoughts quieted as she stood in the breeze, she closed her eyes and lifted her face towards the sun, which stood in the sky slightly behind her. She felt the warmth on her face, on her bare shoulders, and it made the smile she wore on her face that much more enjoyable.

She felt the urge to walk, so walk she did. She began by placing one foot in front of the other, taking steps slowly, letting the sand sink between her toes before picking her foot up again to take a step. She thought to herself about different things as she walked. She thought the crabs just at the edge of the water had a funny look about them, the way they scuttled side to side. Laughingly she did the same, mocking their movements quickly back and forth. Her smile grew larger, and she knew what it was to be happy.

The white sand continued in each direction as far as she could see, in front of her and behind her. Nothing broke the landscape, no buildings, not trees, just hills of sand around the beach, and a flowing ocean that stood to her left as she walked along. She was unsure as to where she was going, but something told her, perhaps her intuition, that it was not time to stop, that her walking would serve a purpose soon. She thought again, looking up at the clouds, that they seemed to have the shapes of animals. She didn’t know the names of the animals, but she knew what they looked like. It was curious to her that she knew things, but did not know them. She knew her smile was a good thing, but not for what, or whom, the smile was.

Perhaps the smile was for someone, she thought. Thinking that thought made her realize that the smile was, indeed, for someone, but she could not place who that person might be. She had no real idea of who she knew. She was aware that she knew people, like the image of a kind old man dipping some kind of liquid that tasted as if it came from the sea into a bowl, or the young children she remembered playing a game involving rocks, but she didn’t know who they were. She knew they were not the reason for her smile, and that was the important thing to know.

She stopped for a moment, and took a hard look up the sand, and realized there was a speck of something standing out against the white sand. Urgency suddenly pulled her thoughts toward the idea that there was something different up ahead, other than crabs and seashells. She quickened her pace, single steps that took moments before, tarrying along the beach, were now taking seconds. She drew closer, and saw that this was a person. There was someone here, she could see arms and legs, but nothing more. The person she was looking at recognized her shape as well, and they began to surge forward with just as much urgency as she had.

She was running now, every giant leap forward brought sand up into the air. Her steps were bounding leaps, and her breath began to build in her chest. She gasped in the deep salt air, and it made her fingers tingle. Her eyes strained to see more detail of the figure that seemed to be so far away, yet close to her. She could now see that it was a man, and he was running her way as well. She began to desperately run as hard as her body would allow. Her legs began to burn and ache, but she refused to know the pain, just as she did not know who it was she was running to. Her skirt fanned out behind her as she ran, the wind blew through her hair and she was exhilarated, she felt as if she were truly alive, realizing that before she hadn’t felt so real.

Her heart pounded in her chest, but she pressed on and as she drew ever closer to this mysterious figure she realized he held a smile as big and bright as hers. She wondered if he had been as lost as she was, if he knew the things she did, or rather didn’t know the things she didn’t know. Was this the person she was smiling for? Was she the reason for his?

Then they were there, together. Standing before each other, hearts racing and breath being gasped through smiles. She laughed first, and he followed when he heard her. For what seemed to her like hours they stood there, silent, staring at each other, just as she had stared out at the sea. She knew then that she had found her purpose for being here, that he was the reason she was smiling. He reached to her as she realized this and she knew, this one thing she knew, was that he had come to the same conclusion. Their hands touched, bare skin of their arms sliding against each other, as they came to together in an embrace.

At that moment the world around her seemed to fade away, the sound of the waves was no more, the sand between her toes was gone, the smell of the salt in the air had disappeared. She was aware of only him, and she was sure that he was aware only of her, pressed against each other. She had found herself and her life.

It was a smile for someone.

I can only imagine the ways I have disappointed you.

I say I can only imagine them because you won’t tell them to me. Our world has gone quiet, the smiles are no longer smeared across our faces. We weren’t ever really aware that they were there, as involuntary as they were.

I don’t think I’ll ever be able to correct the mistakes I’ve made. Initially, in my foolish pride, I did not think I had made any. I was right as the Rain Falling Mostly On the Plain in Spain.

I know now. My mistake was thinking I hadn’t made any, and believing myself when I said it.

Will this be the regret I have, when I am old? Will I look back and think to myself that I could have been better?

I could have been better, you know. I will tell myself this over and over, for days and weeks, and months, and maybe even years. Vainly, I hope you will hear it as I speak and you will forgive me.

I will remember the moments we had together, as brief as they may have been. In the grand scheme of my life so far, our time together represents a fraction so small it cannot be considered a number.

But those few minutes, I feel as if I will remember them for a lifetime. They will forever mold and shape me, into the person I am today.

The day you first hugged me was the best of my life. It made everything in my life up until that point practically a work of fiction.

Later that night, we sat, edging closer together. We were both afraid, I think, to know what the touch of the other felt like. But we were eager as well, and our curiosity won.

For me, those minutes can never be replaced. My fear is that they will, for either me, or you.

I know that I desire a second chance. I think that you don’t want to give me one.

Where does this leave us? You will move on, and live your life.

I will continue in a monologue to seclusion.

*******

This, and more, at Synaptic Thought.

From the Sky

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The alarm went off this morning, as is it’s usual custom at 7:30. The piercing beep breaks through even the most realistic of dreams and my first response is panic, I am normally up and out of bed, hitting the button to turn it off before three beeps have called out. Every morning, I fall back into bed, finding sanctuary from the coolness of my room in the warm burrow of covers I just left. The first few moments of my morning are spent struggling with all the thoughts and memories that come vividly back to me. My subconscious tends to attack when I am weakest, reminding me of things I usually don’t want to think about. On some mornings when I wake I am greeted by a gray tinge, and the sounds of falling water just a few inches away from me through the window above my head.

Today was one of those days. The sounds of rain falling from above, the splish-splash of people walking through puddles, and swoosh of cars flinging water from under the tires. I laid in bed a little bit longer today, just listening to the sounds, enjoying the soothing comfort of the way rain shushes the world, gives you a peaceful serenade of sleep. Rain always tends to make me contemplative about my current situations and surroundings. So as I lay in bed, waiting just a brief pause before I start my day, I thought about my life and the things going on in it.

I realized that I’m pretty content with the way things are, and they seem to be getting better. It is that kind of thought, early in the morning, that makes your day start well. So I threw off the warm blankets, sat up, and began my day. After showering and shaving (well, my version of it), I dressed in the pale light of morning, practical darkness. Lights are a waste in the morning, they ruin the softness of the day.

My goal of getting out of bed accomplished, I went downstairs, opened the doorway that leads to the world and stood for a moment. The gray of the morning cast by the perpetual dripping of water from the sky gave everything that slight tinge of remorse of being awake. Admittedly, I was slightly remorseful for being awake. These are the days that are best spent cuddling in bed with that certain someone, having breakfast in bed, and enjoying conversations while staring at the ceiling. With that thought, I walked out into the rain.

Read this, and more, at Synaptic Thought.

As a kid, and even as a teenager, I always dreamed of being someone important. My concept of how important someone was tended to be a little skewed, though. My idea basically ranked the more important a person was by the number of meetings they had to go to in a day. Of course, that meant in my childhood fantasies of work, I would wear a suit and spend all day sitting in conference rooms discussing the next big thing, or the latest problem.

Included in that would be lots of air travel to big cities in the U.S. and maybe even abroad. I’d say things like, “Oh, I can’t be there on Monday, I’ll be in Spain.” or walk into my office and tell my assistant “Hold all of my calls, I have something urgent that must be done.” Of course there would be a company car, expense account, the works, so to speak. I would come home with a loosened tie, and plop down on the couch and talk about what a beast the day had been.

I’ve learned a few things since that time frame. One of them is that meetings usually tend to be a total waste of time! Not all of them, some of them can be productive, but usually a meeting is just a way to get a bunch of people together to discuss things that everybody already knows, but wants to make sure we discuss anyway. Secondly, the life of corporate airfare cannot be that great! Last year I went to a conference in Seattle, so obviously I had to take a plane. I’ve taken a few short plane rides during my time here, from Savannah to D.C., from Macon to Shreveport, nothing really major. From Savannah to Seattle took ages! I was so exhausted after the flight that I am not really sure I would have been able to do any amount of real thought.

The only draw to those trips was that I got to travel and see things I normally wouldn’t be able to. Flying into Seattle, and staying in a hotel in downtown, or staying at a resort on the border of Canada, watching boats drift in the bay. Spending time in D.C., walking through the underground mall at Crystal City, viewing Arlington on that cold, dreary day. Really all that awakened in me was the desire to travel, to see things and places.

I’m not sure, maybe one day I’ll have a job like I described, where I travel a lot, and see lots of different things. But right now I’m very content sleeping in my own bed and being able to see my friends on a regular basis. I just wish I could see certain other people on a regular basis.

Read this, and more, at Synaptic Thought.

Truth Misunderstood

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I’ve never been able to grasp the fact that diplomatic disputes are often lost over a single wrong word, or misunderstood phrase. To some degree I consider myself a very open person when it comes to communication. I’ll talk about whatever you like at pretty much any time. Even if it means something bad for me, or for you. I’m so focused on communication because I honestly am very terrible at picking up on clues when they relate to me. For other people I can see the writing on the wall as if it were penned in neon ink.

It is becasue I am so oblivious to what is going on in my own life that I try to be as easy as possible to communicate with. If I have a problem I try to be nonconfrontational, if I have some good news I try to be as direct with it as possible. I want people to be comfortable talking with me because I need them to talk to me. I need people to tell me that I’m being dumb about something, or that I am doing something really well. I just assume that if nothing is said, that I should maintian the status quo and keep on doing things the way I have been doing them.

Normally this works out for me, as long as people know that I’m not going to get sublety. There are times, though, in which it isn’t understood that I’m not going to get the picture, and I am ok with that, I have to adapt just as much as other people do. It just makes me sad because usually in those instances I end up doing something dumb because I didn’t know something I needed to.

I normally learn about my mistakes after it is too late to take them back. I guess at some point we all deal with the problem that we just aren’t understood, or that we failed in getting our point across in a manner that was reasonable and made sense. The problem I have then is that I end up living in the past, wishing I could go back and change that one thing that seems to have made everything else go wrong. I know there is nothing that can be done about it, and I try to move on at every chance I get, because living in the past doesn’t help anyone.

At times it’s just hard to really grasp that something that could have been was derailed by one misunderstood thought, or one reaction, or one little word said in the wrong tone. I’m learning though, and I see now why wars are started over simple things that grew out of proportion. I wonder if any of those leaders sit alone in the dark and wish they could go back to take that one word back. I’m not starting any wars, I know, so it is a hard comparison to make.

Just remember, every word we say changes our lives in some way. Some words are unimportant and make very little impact, some words are huge and change the way your life will be forever. And some words are unspoken.

This, and more, can be found at Synaptic Thought.